Exactly one year ago SoylentNews published its very first story: Welcome to SoylentNews! And what a year it's been! It all started with a posting at slashdot where an editor claimed they had "listened to their audience" about complaints about the new Beta version of the site that was being rolled out. Many noted that any changes were cosmetic — that it was the community that made that site what it was. And, in inimical nerd fashion, a "SlashCott" was scheduled from February 10-17 wherein the participants pledged to not visit /. for one whole week. Others took a more active role. The source code for /. was originally made open source and was available on the internet. Sadly, that code had not been maintained and was several years out of date. Some intrepid souls labored long and hard to locate servers, coordinate activities, and get the code knocked into shape. The goal was to create an alternative site that was free from the manipulations of a corporate overlord. That first story signified a major accomplishment, but the site was still unstable and many features were incomplete, non-functional, or just plain ugly. Many more days of implementation, debugging, and testing were to follow culminating with SN going live to the world on February 17, 2014: Welcome to the World of Tomorrow... Today!. Much has happened since that nascent story first graced the 'net. There have been changes in our all-volunteer staff. We had votes for the name of the site. We implemented UTF-8 support so stories and comments can include any valid character. We incorporated as a Public Benefit Corporation — on USA's Independence Day no less! We have an on-line store where you can buy SoylentNews Swag. You can subscribe and help support our site. By the numbers: Over 5000 accounts have been registered and nearly 5000 stories have been posted to the site. Each story is read from 500-2000 times by logged-in users, and approximately 10 times as many Anonymous Cowards. More importantly, nearly 150,000 comments have been posted by you, our community. Today, we have a small but dedicated group of volunteers who keep the site running. They keep the OS up-to-date on our servers, maintain our Wiki, e-mail, and IRC channels. They add features and fix bugs in the SN code base. Others edit and publish stories to appear on the site. We have a Board of Directors who take care of the legal sides of things. A treasurer who follows the finances. And there are still others who help in a non-technical, but just as necessary capacity in keeping the site humming along.
So, hats off to all who have helped build this site to what it is today!
Seems fair to me, although I probably wouldn't use it, and I wonder whether enough people would use it to make it pay for itself.
Unless it was seen as an alternative way of accepting donations. Change your username, then 10 minutes later change it back again, etc.. (But for that kind of thing I prefer the ideas in comment #144144 below.)
It really couldn't help but pay for itself since nobody here gets paid to work and our processors just skim off a bit with no up-front charge (bitpay skims from the customer, paypal skims from us). I was thinking entering the changes manually from a mysql prompt since automation could lead to people playing silly buggers with repeated nick changes but I suppose if they want to pay to play silly buggers, that's on them.
Any chance on getting a different way to subscribe? I refuse to use paypal, and I am not a bitcoiner.
Yes, only not for a while yet. I'm on leave to move to a different state until March-ish which basically means a release around April 1 would only have one month for an entire dev and testing cycle, which I don't consider enough when handling other people's money. So, I'd planned on using March to fix as many bugs as I could find and start in on whatever was next in April. Thus, in all likelihood it will be at least June before we can get another payment processor (probably credit/debit cards via Stripe) hooked up.
Why am I talking like I'm the only dev? Because at the moment, that's exactly the case. paulej72 has been exceedingly busy with work for a while now and we are the only two code monkeys currently on the dev team.
I will be glad to subscribe once we get to that point, bonus points if I can choose what to pay for my subscription on say a monthly basis.
If we did monthly subscriptions, I would want to increase the cost probably to 2.50 a month to cover overhead charges.